Book Blitz: Before You by Eve Cates (Excerpt + Giveaway + Teasers!)

Hey bookies! Welcome to the book blitz for BEFORE YOU by Eve Cates!

Check out the teasers and excerpt below!

Title: Before You
Author: Eve Cates
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 18th 2015

Amazon (US) | Amazon (UK) | Amazon (CA) | Amazon (AU)

Be with me.

Stay with me.

Just until I don’t need you anymore…’

When Willa Henderson flew to Chicago, she was just supposed to pack up her brother’s apartment and ship everything inside it back to LA. That included packing up his roommate’s things up as well. It was a big ask, but Dave was her big brother, so Willa agreed.

The last thing she was expecting was to run into said roommate – the intense German named, André Bauer, a photojournalist who was supposed to be in Afghanistan working for the next few weeks – on her first night there.

She also wasn’t expecting him to throw her out on her a** without even trying to let her explain who she was and why she was there.

Let’s just say it was…hate at first sight.

From the moment they met, they didn’t like each other, and neither of them really had any interest in changing that fact. But one thing they did know, was that they were unequivocally attracted, and it didn’t take too long for them to collide.

With both of them screwed up by their pasts, neither of them could handle a relationship if they tried –

André is a self-confessed a**hole.

Willa is a self-confessed commitment-phone and gets angry whenever she feels.

Then there’s Willa’s brother, who could very well kill André if he found out he’d slept with his sister.

But, when desires go unchecked, there’s little that can change the outcome, and eventually Willa and André agreed to give in – just until they got each other out of their system.

They expected it would take a week, maybe two. Then they could walk away without anyone getting hurt.

Before each other, that arrangement might have worked out, but there was something there – an intensity they couldn’t explain.

As layers are peeled back and secrets are revealed, they find themselves in a state of need that neither was prepared for…

Before You is a standalone contemporary romance with no cliffhanger and its own HEA.

Goodreads

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EXCERPT

We landed against the wall just inside the door.“Maybe we should set down some ground rules,” I gasped between kisses as I pushed his shirt up over his head and threw it on the ground. I ran my hands down the hard muscles of his chest, between his abs then stopped at the button of his jeans.

Bowing his head, he kissed and gently bit my neck. For a moment, my mind was empty as his tongue moved along my jaw.

“What kind of rules?” he whispered, sliding his hands underneath my shirt and running his warm palms over the flesh at my waist.

“Um…” His hands moved over my breasts, practically ghosting them. I wanted him to grab them, knead them. My nipples went hard at the thought.

“Rules?” he prompted, removing his hands then lifting my shirt over my head. Immediately, he grabbed my breasts and squeezed like he knew exactly what I wanted. Then he pressed a kiss to my cleavage, and my fingers slid into his hair.

“Don’t tell me I’m beautiful. I hate it when guys do that when they get you naked.”

“But you are beautiful.”

“Just don’t. Please.”

“Fine.”

“And we only do this when we’re alone. Nothing public.”

“What else?” he asked, slipping his fingers beneath my bra strap, kissing my shoulder as he slid it off then unclasped my bra.

“No sleeping.”

“Morning sex is amazing. I don’t agree to that.”

“Sleeping is too intimate. We can…oh”

His mouth closed over my nipple as his arm wrapped around my waist and he pulled me against him possessively.

 “There will be sleeping, Willa,” he said firmly when he stopped and stood upright, his fingers gently tweaking my nipple as he looked into my eyes. “Anything else?”
About the author:

Eve Cates is a twenty-something author of contemporary romance. She loves all things naughty, demanding men and difficult situations (pass the popcorn please). She has currently penned three serials and one standalone novel, delighting her readers with forbidden romance and tortured souls.

Eve has loved writing ever since she picked up her first crayon and penned a note to her imaginary friend ‘Pok’. Accused of being a ‘dreamer’ as she grew, she’s taken that notion and turned her daydreams into stories to enthrall and satisfy her readers.

When she isn’t writing, you’ll find her at home with her husband, four children, and two dogs.

 
Find her on: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Thank you to Give Me Books Promotions for hosting this book blitz!

Book Blitz: The Voice Between My Legs Part 2 by Ozlo & Priya Grey (Giveaway)

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The Voice Between My Legs Part 2

Title: The Voice Between My Legs, Part 2
Author: Ozlo & Priya Grey
Book Blitz: October 19 – 21
Genre: Erotica/BDSM Romance
Purchase LinkAmazon

 What My Body Wants, My Heart Can’t Have.…

Lacey

Cooper has revealed his secret and his deception runs deep. My head tells me to walk away, but my body refuses. Sex with Cooper West rocks me to the core and shatters all preconceived notions of who I am. So when the billionaire presents an “arrangement” that can satisfy both our needs, I agree against my better judgment. We’re playing a dangerous game – one where our emotions and physical desires clash.

Cooper

No matter how many times I ravish her body, I’m still not satisfied. Lacey Winters has awoken feelings in me that I buried long ago. But I can’t let her get too close. Now that she knows my secret, there’s too much at stake. I have to stop thinking about her. I have to stop wanting her. I have to keep my distance while I savor every inch of her body.

Goodreads

ENTER THE RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY HERE!

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~~~ OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES ~~~

 

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Purchase LinkAmazon

I’ve done things you might not agree with. You may not like me because of it. But if you lived through what I experienced, maybe you’d see things differently. I wasn’t going to let anyone get in the way of my new life…then I met him.

Cooper West is attractive, wealthy, and CEO of one of hottest companies in New York City. He can have any girl he wants… he chose me. I have to tell him about the things I’ve done…but how?

What would happen if you let the man of your dreams read your diary? Would he still want to be with you? I’m about to find out.

 

About the author:

Author pic

Ozlo and Priya Grey are a husband and wife writing team. Their time is consumed with writing, re-writing, editing, and tinkering with Photoshop and WordPress.

When they step away from their desks, they enjoy long walks on the beaches of Southern California.

Find them on: Facebook | Twitter

 

 

 

Thank you to S.B.B. Promotions for hosting this book blitz!

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Release Blitz: An Unexpected Love by J. Haney (Excerpt + Giveaway + Teasers!)

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Hey bookies! AN UNEXPECTED LOVE by J. Haney is now live!

Check out an excerpt and teasers below!

An Unexpected Love

Title: An Unexpected Love  
Author: J. Haney
Genres: Adult/Contemporary Romance/Suspense
Purchase Links:
 Amazon (US)Amazon (UK) | Amazon (CA)Amazon (AU)

Ten years ago tragedy struck Kyler, leaving her pregnant and alone.

She did what she had to do to survive.

But that’s all she was doing. That is until he crashed into her life.

Caleb Hudson was always destined to be the playboy and never settle down.

Walking into the studio that day, he wasn’t expecting to find her.

Fate decided she had another plan for them.

When they both least expected it, a bond between them was formed.

The bond that may end up saving their lives.

Goodreads

ENTER THE RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY HERE!

TEASERS

An Unexpected Love Teaser 1

An Unexpected Love Teaser 2

EXCERPT

Thirty minutes later we hear a knock at the door Mrs. Ryan yells up that she will get it. I figured it’s just our Chinese being delivered. I’m setting the plastic on the floor so we can start painting after we eat. Just as I finished setting everything up I hear Mrs. Ryan screams out. I ran to my bedroom to grab my phone and the gun they made me keep beside my bed. I hid myself in the closet as I called Mr. Ryan, on the second ring I heard him answer.

“Hey, how are my girls doing?”  He sounded happy

“Someone’s here, I’m in the closet with my gun like you told me to do. I heard a scream! What do I do?” I rambled nervously.

“Calm down Kyler… I am calling the Police in Arco. I know your father taught you to shoot. So you go downstairs and if you think you need to shoot, then intruder then that is what you do.”  He sounds a bit nervous.

“Okay, I got it.” I say then hang up the phone.

Sneaking down the stairs, I see a man is holding Mrs. Ryan against the wall. Mrs. Ryan makes eye contact with and I hold up one finger to see how many people are in the house. “YOU AND ME ARE THE ONLY ONES HERE ASSHOLE! LET ME GO NOW!” She screams and I just nod at her. The intruder slams her head against the wall again. I tiptoe into the rest of the way down and sneak up behind them. I place my gun to the back of his head.

The guns loaded and the cops are on their way. Now let Mrs. Ryan go or I will shoot you before they get here.” I say as calmly as possible. “I don’t think you will actually shoot me.” He sounds extremely pissed off. “I am going to give you to the count of three then I will shoot this gun!” I wait a moment to see if he will let her go. Damn it, he is going to call my bluff! “One… Two… Thr”. He let go of Mrs. Ryan before I got three out. “Now turn around.” The man slowly turns to look at me and tries to take the gun out of my hand. While fighting for the gun I can feel a pain starting in my stomach, oh no it’s too soon. Damn it Ky you know better than this. With one hand on the gun I knee the man in the nuts and steal the gun back away from him. I back away quickly and when the man starts to come at us I pull the trigger.

 

About the author:

J. HaneyI was born and raised in Kentucky. I reside in Greenup County, Kentucky with my family. Her debut novel, An Unexpected Love, is set to release May/June 2015. I’m a single momma to my seven year old daughter, Jessalyn Kristine.

I run Sweet N Sassy Book A Holics along with my sisters from other misters! I’m the co-owner of an online boutique, Proud Momma Designs, which I run with my amazing mother. I also own Sweet and Sassy Models! I love photography and seeing all the little models and their smiling faces! I just started plus size modeling and have been 5 or 6 pattern covers now. Which I’m beyond excited about…

Fun Facts

  1. My daughter Jessalyn is my most favorite person in the world!
  2. I’m probably the biggest book whore there is!
  3. I love music of any kind, but better yet, I love singing!
  4. I hate cold/wet weather!
  5. I wear at least 4 different colors at once!
  6. I have the most awesome group of friends a gal can have. Tracy, Sandie, Sara, Jamie, Lisa, Chris, Patricia and Annelle! Love you Ladies!!
  7. I would love to one day meet Alice Clayton, Christina Lauren, A.M. Willard, Jamie McGuire, and so many others.
  8. I’m completely addicted to Tattoos and Piercings!
  9. I’m very random, and will say crazy stuff out of nowhere.
  10. I can tell you every word from beginning to ending of Wallbanger by Alice Clayton and One Night Series by A.M. Willard.

Find her onFacebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon | Newsletter | Pinterest | TSU | Tumblr

 

Thank you to Sweet N Sassy Book A Holics for hosting this release blitz!

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Release Boost Blitz: Savage Fire by Kathleen Kelly (Excerpt + Giveaway + Teasers)

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Hey bookies! Remember Savage Fire being released a few days ago?

Yes, here’s an extra boost! With teasers of Savage Fire and another excerpt!

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Title: Savage Fire (Savage Angels MC #2)
Author: Kathleen Kelly
Release Date: May 29th 2015
Purchase Links: Amazon (US) | Amazon (UK) | KOBO | iBooks

Emily Reynolds, estranged sister to Dane Reynolds, President of the Savage Angels MC, has just lost her father.  He was not a caring man and inflicted suffering on his family.  Dane abandoned her and her mother years ago, leaving them alone to deal with a brutal man who never showed any love or mercy.  Emily wants Dane to feel the pain she felt, she wants him to suffer as she did and decides to make the long drive to see him.

Salvatore Agostino, captain in the Abruzzi crime family is also on his way to see Dane Reynolds. A ruthless businessman, he is fiercely loyal to his family and his men.  A chance encounter brings him face to face with Emily.

These two meet and their attraction grows into a love that neither could have anticipated.

Will they be able to overcome the turmoil that awaits them or will their love be destroyed by forces beyond their control?

Goodreads

ENTER THE RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY HERE!

TEASERS

Savage Fire Teaser 1

Savage Fire Teaser 2

Savage Fire Teaser 3

Savage Fire Teaser 4

EXCERPT

I am completely overwhelmed. My core is on fire and I want so much to kiss him, to touch him. I feel sparks of electricity shoot through every fiber in my body and every nerve ending is screaming for release. I want his hands on me, all over me.

“Amare?”

I put my hands on his chest and push him away. He’s too close, making it hard to form a single thought. I take two steps to the side to put some distance between us so I can speak like a human, not a lust induced zombie. “Yes, they towed my car and it’s in their lot. I haven’t really spoken to them about it yet. I kind of fell asleep on them…”

His face clouds over and he says, “You kind of fell asleep on them? What. Does. That. Mean?” He pauses between each word and growls them at me.

“Jonas took me to see Doc Jordan and he gave me something for the pain, but because I hadn’t slept in days it made me sleepy. I think he ended up carrying me to their clubhouse.” I realize how all this must sound. If someone told me that exact same story, I would be thinking the worst.

“Did they touch you, Amare?” he growls at me, his eyes blazing with anger.

“No, no, no! In fact, Jonas put a guard on my door so no one would go near me. Not that they would. I was safe, Sal.” Something crosses his face and he stares at me so intently that I look away and stare at the floor.

 He moves back into my space and lifts my head up. “Thank you for getting me coffee. Let’s go have breakfast and I’m buying. I think I shall keep you in my sights to make sure nothing else happens to you. I have never met a woman who allows herself to get into so many dangerous situations, in such a short space in time. You, my Amare, are a handful.” He moves away from me and does up his shirt, then grabs his jacket. He opens the door to his room and extends his arm. “Shall we?” he asks, offering me a smile that reveals his dimple. My core clenches again and I have to fight the urge to throw myself at him.

~~~ FIRST IN THE SERIES ~~~

 

Savage Stalker Teaser

Purchase Links: Amazon (US) | Amazon (UK) | KOBO | iBooks

 

About the author:

Kathleen Kelly was born in Penrith, NSW, Australia. When she was four her family moved to Brisbane, QLD, Australia. Although born in NSW she considers herself a QUEENSLANDER!!

She married her childhood sweetheart and they live in Brisbane with their two furry kids. A British Short Hair called Grace and a Burmese called Jack.

Kathleen enjoys writing contemporary, romance novels with a little bit of erotica. She draws her inspiration from family, friends and the people around her. She can often be found in cafes writing and observing the locals.

If you have any questions about her novels or would like to ask Kathleen a question she can be contacted via e-mail: kathleenkellyauthor@gmail.com or she can be found on Facebook.

Find her on: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Re-Release Book Blitz: Lives Entwined by Eve Newton (Teasers!)

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Welcome to the re-release book blitz of Lives Entwined by Eve Newton!

**Sale Alert**

Lives Entwined is currently on sale for $1.99 for a limited time!

 

Lives Entwined CoverTitle: Lives Entwined
Author: Eve Newton}
Release Date: November 23rd 2014
Purchase link: Amazon

Alex Monaghan was doing great with his life until his new boss walked into it. Cassandra Bellingham was beautiful, young and successful, but little did he know she had another side to her that he couldn’t understand and a mysterious, brooding lover, Rex, that he knew nothing about. He was drawn to her, as she was to him and even though she was forced to keep her secrets for a variety of personal and professional reasons, she remained torn between Rex and Alex. These two men who each gave her what she wanted, but in very different ways.

As their involvement with each other got deeper, so did the twist. Love found and lost, a friend’s betrayal, family with shady dealings, a housekeeper with a grudge and a broken man looking for his redemption but in the wrong place, sees six lives tangled together in an intricate web that nobody expected, and that changes all of their lives forever. Will it be for better or for worse? Contains scenes of light BDSM intended for mature readers only.

Goodreads

TEASERS

Lives Entwined Teaser 1

Lives Entwined Teaser 2

 

About the author:

Eve NewtonEve is a UK novelist with a passion for anything paranormal & erotic. She loves Louboutins, good wine, and of course, a good book!

Eve has always loved to read, anything Paranormal catches her interest, and writing has always been a passion of hers, so she decided to take the plunge and combine the two into a series of Paranormal Erotica novels. Eve has loads more ideas churning around in her head and can’t wait to get them down on paper (or screen!).

There are currently twelve books in the Forever series published, including a short spin-off. Eve plans to keep writing the series to Book 15, with one more spin-off novella.

Eve has also released two volumes of The Early Years Series, the first book out of three in a new Paranormal series – Demon Bound (Bound Series, Book One), Erotic Romance novel’s Lives Entwined and The Art of Deception and a short Bound Series Prequel.

She hopes you will enjoy reading her books as much as she enjoys writing them!

Find her on: Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Author Page Amazon

 

Thank you to Pussycat Promotions for hosting this re-release book blitz!

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Book Blitz: Breaking Away Series by Meli Raine (Excerpt + Giveaway!)

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Welcome to the book blitz for the Breaking Away Series by Meli Raine! Check out the excerpt and giveaway below!
          Finding AllieChasing AllieKeeping Allie
Breaking Away Series by Meli Raine  (Breaking Away #1-3)
Release Date: March 2015
Genres: New Adult, Romance, Suspense

Finding Allie (Breaking Away #1)
Chase Halloway’s father is the president of Atlas, the drug dealing motorcycle gang that terrorizes most of our desert town.
My stepfather turns out to be a rival drug dealer, and I’m pretty sure he killed my mom two years ago.
I’m not supposed to fall in love with Chase. He’s not supposed to know I even exist.
But when he finds me, he can’t let go.
And when I find myself in his arms?
I hold tight.
I have to.
Because if I don’t, I might just die.
With or without him.

Chasing Allie (Breaking Away #2)
It turns out my stepfather has plans for me.
Plans that make dying look like a walk in the park.
He’s selling my virginity to a Mexican drug lord to get out of debt.
Chase just found out and is here to take me away to safety. To the ocean. To my dreams.
But while I’m gone, a murder takes place back home.
I receive a phone call. It’s the police.
I’m the prime suspect.
And if I go back, I may become the prime victim.
They say love conquers all, but can Chase save me from this?

Keeping Allie (Breaking Away #3)
Help.
I’m alone, tied up, bleeding and terrified.
I’m a prisoner at the Atlas motorcycle club compound. Someone kidnapped me, and it looks like it’s Chase.
No one knows I’m here. Then again, I’m no one, right? No mother, no stepfather, and my sister may have been kidnapped, too
They can make me disappear. Or worse. It turns out there are worse things than disappearing.
I thought Chase was my only hope.
Now he turns out to be my worst nightmare.
Something flickers in his eyes, though. A glimmer of love. If I can get him alone, maybe I can convince him to let me go. To let me live.
To let me go back to a time when I thought he was a good guy.
Only Chase has the power to make that happen.
Everything I am is in his hands right now.
And those hands are about to touch me.

Goodreads
Purchase link (all 3 books in the series will be on sale for .99c):
Breaking Away Series
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$25 Starbucks gift card OR
Signed copy of all 3 books in the Breaking Away series
EXCERPT
I feel the rumble of the motorcycle engines before I can hear them. The glasses on the bar start to shake and I slip, dropping one. It falls on the polished wood bar with a thud. Thank God it doesn’t shatter.And then I hear them. Tires scraping against gravel. Engines without mufflers. The air changes. I’m filled with worry, like someone’s injected it into me. I reach up to put my fingers against my throat. I don’t know why. I haven’t done that since I was a little kid, afraid of the dark.Just plain afraid.My stepfather comes running from the back office, his eyes wild and arms tight with tension. His face is twisted with something I’ve never seen before. For a second, it makes me want to smile. For once, he looks like he’s nervous about something.

Good.

“Allie, you stay calm. Keep washing glasses.” His dark eyes narrow and he goes back to being cool and collected. The deep grooves of wrinkles in his face settle back to normal. His eyes are thin and tight, brown underneath the loose skin.

He’s tall and wiry, fingers stained from chain smoking unfiltered Camels. He looks at least ten years older than he is. My mother’s death two years ago aged him. It aged me, too, but I wear it on the inside.

He wears it on his face.

Jeff has two emotions. Angry and neutral. I’ve seen a lot of angry, but not much neutral.

He looks like he feels fear right now. That’s new.

I push my long, black hair behind one ear. I wish I had a scrunchie to pull it back in a ponytail. August in the dry, desert heat of inland Southern California means it’s always hot. Any other summer and I’d be getting ready to go back to school, but I graduated this year. Late summer stretches out like one hot, empty void.

Like the rest of a life I need to live but can’t.The air conditioners have been groaning all day. The sound of the motorbikes drowns them out now.They are in the parking lot. Two. Three. Four. I can’t keep track of how many bikes pull up. My heartraces but I keep it together. The last time a motorcycle gang came in, the bar got trashed. They beat Jeff up and the sheriff came.

Jeff can’t afford to have that happen again.

Blood rushes through me, pulsing hard. My fear is loud and clear.

He also got angry. Very angry.

I can’t afford to have that happen again.

Working at the bar is my only way to save money to move out of this town. I want to go live with my sister in Los Angeles. If the bar shuts down I don’t know what I’ll do. My hands polish the same shot glass over and over, like it’s a piece of silver.

My heart dances in my chest. I look down at my t-shirt and see drops of sweat trickling down from my neck.

The air is not that hot. I’m nervous. Terrified.

One of the bikers roars his engine outside. Another one does the same. Jeff comes back out with his cell phone in hand and starts talking angrily to someone on the phone. He is careful not to say anything loud enough for me to understand. I can’t hear a word. I can hear his fury, though.

I finish the shot glasses and load them on the shelf where they go. I’m shaking from the inside.

The main door opens a tiny sliver. Blinding sunlight pours in like it’s invading.

And then he walks in through the door. The sunlight behind him is a halo, like he’s an angel. A rough one. The most amazing vision.

Thick, scuffed leather boots with hard wooden heels crack against the bare wood floor, one at a time.

My eyes start with that first boot. Then I see another. He wears jeans, the kind that are used to being on a motorcycle rider’s body. His pants mold to thick, muscled legs.

He wears a red and blue patch with an insignia I can’t see. Sunlight bounces off a thick belt buckle.

My blood runs cold and I freeze in place, my legs turning to jelly. I lean against the counter for support.

I’m glad it’s there. My fingers need something to grab. My world is disintegrating under me. Looking at him replaces the world.

He’s a member of a motorcycle club.

I gaze at the patch he’s wearing but I can’t see it very clearly. It has a blue figure with red crescents on both sides. A warm rush of blood fills my face. His thick leather jacket is dirty and well-worn, dark as my hair and creased with age. A light-blue T-shirt sticks to his belly, slick with sweat. I can see the ridges of his abs. My fingers want to reach out and trace the lines of his muscles. I clench my fists so I won’t give in to the impulse.

“Jeff here?” His first words sound like ragged smoke and sunshine. My eyes meet his and he stays serious. We look at each other and time stops. Just…stops. His eyes widen and his jaw tightens as he searches my body with a look that says something I don’t understand.

But he feels what I feel. I can tell.

Pinpricks of heat from something other than the summer weather shoot through me. He looks like he’s older than me, and he’s steady and commanding. His hair is thick, the color of sand, and it’s messy, like he just rolled out of bed. Wolfish eyes skim over me, but he’s not in a rush.

I can’t breathe. I can’t move. I can’t do anything when he’s looking at me like that.

Please keep looking at me like that.

“Cat got your tongue?” he asks, his lips curling up in a half smile. His cheek moves the lines around his eyes. Light brown eyes with yellow chips, like someone shattered a gemstone. His eyes are like a lion’s, the color of a mane.

His eyes are dangerous and predatory. I can’t look away.

“Uh, Jeff’s in the back,” I say as the door closes slowly behind him, blocking out most of the light. I’m amazed that my mouth works at all. My mind can’t think. My body sure can feel, though.

I pause. What if I said the wrong thing? Jeff might not want anyone to know he’s here.

Vroom! Vroom! Engines blare outside. There are even more out there now. How many could there be? The man’s eyes narrow. He’s studying me. I like it. I don’t think I’m supposed to like it.

I can’t help myself.

“What’s your name?” he asks, a low rumble in his voice making me shiver. I’m not cold.

“Allie.” I shift and jut out my chin to show him I’m not afraid of him. “What’s yours?”

His grin widens and now he takes one more step forward. I can smell him. His scent is sunshine and dust with enough musk to make me take another deep breath.

He smells so real.

“Chase.” His name rolls off his lips. “Nice to meet you, Allie.” He reaches one gloved hand out to shake, then stops.

Pulling the glove off, he waves his hand in the air. “Sweaty.”

I clasp it anyway. It’s hot and slick. The touch of skin on skin makes everything else in the world disappear. Our eyes meet and we can’t stop staring. Am I imagining this?

“Nice to meet you too, I guess.” I look behind him, at the door. “Why are you here?”

He laughs, tipping his head back. It makes him seem less dangerous. “For a drink! This is a bar, after all.”

I smile, unable to tear my eyes away from him.

He’s staring right back.

The engines all trickle to silence. Boots scrape outside on the mottled gravel parking lot. Are they coming in? My heart swells and slams against my ribcage. If trouble is coming, I don’t know what to do. I’ve never been here before during an actual fight.

“All of you coming in?” I ask. If they’re paying customers, then this is fine. Jeff acts like this isn’t fine, though.

“Allie!” Jeff shouts from the back. “Get back here.” That sounds like an order. Jeff likes to order me around.

Chase frowns. “He always talk to you like that?” His words come out like a growl.

Surprised, I give him confused look. “Like what?”

“Like he doesn’t have to be nice.” His voice pounds through me like a heartbeat. He is being possessive, like a protective boyfriend. I only just met him.

The words sting because Chase is right. I swallow hard. Chase’s eyes are combing my face as if he’s trying to memorize me. I look away even as I wish he would watch me forever.

Chase. I want to say his name aloud simply to hear it on my tongue. To feel it roll over my lips. If I say his name then he’s really here, he really shook my hand, and he really is looking at me like he wants to.

Like he needs to.“Whose stepdad is nice to them?” I ask lightly, like I’m trying to blow off the comment. This is too intense. Too unreal. He’s right, though. A little too right.Chase’s fingers twitch and then his hand forms a fist. He’s staring in the direction where Jeff’s voice came from. He looks back toward the door where he entered.“Good point,” he mutters, running his bare hand through that mop of hair. It makes him seem stronger. Darker. More in command.

“One second,” I say, turning away. I can feel his eyes bore into me. If I turn around now, I bet he’s staring at me. As I walk through the threshold to the back hallway I pause. Pretending to adjust something on a shelf, I look in the mirror behind the bar and catch his reflection.

I’m right. A shiver runs so fast through me I have to inhale sharply. This is a new feeling. I don’t know what to do. He’s gorgeous and frightening and the first of many bikers to show up now.

“Allie!” Jeff barks. I scurry back, cursing him in my head but knowing it doesn’t matter. I turn the corner into his office and his voice is so sharp he might as well cut me with it.

“You stop talking to Chase Halloway.”

“You know him?” Chase Halloway. The name makes me buzz all over.

Jeff’s face tightens. I asked the wrong question. By now I should know better. The butterfly of panic flaps its wings in my chest. How could I be so stupid?

He gives me a look that makes my stomach burn.

“What I know isn’t any of your concern. You just serve those bikers and don’t make trouble. No checks. It’s all on the house.”

“What?” My jaw drops. I can’t help it. Jeff never comps drinks for anyone except the sheriff. And he knows I can’t serve drinks.

“You heard me. Don’t question it.” His voice is pure venom.

I won’t. Not again. Jeff is not a violent man. Not toward me, anyway. When he has his bad moods, though, life can be hard. Very, very hard.

Loud voices interrupt us. I turn away and rush down the hallway to find at least twenty men and two women standing at the bar, lined up in a confusing group of laughing and angry faces.

A wolf whistle cuts the air. “Hey there, pretty girl.” A man older than Jeff, with all-grey hair in a fringe around his balding head, whistles again.

“Where’s your daddy?” grunts another man. This one is huge, taller than Chase, but with features that are similar. Chase’s dad, maybe. It’s hard to tell. All the bikers are covered with a layer of road dirt. Their faces look tanner than they really are.

“I’ll be her daddy,” shouts someone in the crowd. “Her sugar daddy.” A bunch of men laugh. My whole body goes cold with fear. I shut down. All I can think about is the baseball bat behind the bar. If  I can get back there, maybe I’ll be safe.

“Cut it out,” Chase says, louder than the laughter. I look to my left and see him, alone, standing right where I left him.

His eyes are on me. Only me. But his words are for the crowd.

“Claiming her already?” someone shouts. There’s a challenge in the question.

Chase steps forward, closer to me. When he’s only a foot away, he pauses. I can feel his heat reaching out to pull me in. His arms don’t, though.
Chase turns back to face them. “And if I am?”
About the author:
Meli Raine Meli Raine rode her first motorcycle when she was five years old, but she played in the ocean long before that. She lives in New England with her family. Join her New Releases and Sales newsletter at: http://eepurl.com/beV0gf
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